As someone who does not believe in an afterlife with punishment editions, and also would not strictly adhear to conventional ideas of reincarnation, death to me has always appeared to be a release from suffering. So the obsession with death as a punishment, the ultimate punishment, has always puzzled me, surely if punishment is really what you want then creating a worse life on earth is what is called for - and as we can see throughout history, we are really, really good at doing that.
I think Thunderbay is a testament to Ryan McCann's, persistent yet somehow still gentle focus on this issue, and for pulling back from the true crime trope of focus on individuals, and looking at the bigger picture of how crime intersects with literally everything else. As humans we are messy, and complex and unpredictable, and our desire to want crime wrapped up neatly and quickly is probably a reflection of the fact crime gives us a sense of a lack of control.
Yet, when we look at the evidence over time it's likely that women have been just, if not more prolific in their voilence. A combination of using methods which have been more difficult to detect and less showy, such as posoin, combined with cultural taboo's that still exist around women, caring and motherhood which mean their violence can often not be contemplated, very weirdly leads me to conclude this is yet another area in which women's contributions have been overlooked. And as pshycologist Anna Motz says, when we deny women's violence, we deny women.
Finishing the podcast felt to me like the time me and my wee brother, who is only eighteen months younger than me, both got on a see-saw, but as we were the same weight, it didn't move at all. No seeing, no sawing, just sitting there awkwardly in the middle, with our feet dangling off the ground, waiting for a grown-up to come along and help.
It is a sign that Black is a talented writer, not just scientist, that she can translated these parts of ourselves, that literally no one ever wants to see, into not just a compelling read but an education tool that reframes our internal world.
The Shrink Next Door is fascinating, horrifying and baffling all in one, but mostly it feels a little incomplete, and that's not just to do with the lack of bodies.
This is a work that undermines the notion of the contemporary realism as it is set half in reality, half in myth, half in the physical world, half in the mind. Being partly made of myth and mind, the reality The Maidens presents us with beyond physical buildings, and bodies is slippery, subjective and hard to pin down.
The road to hell is paved with good intention, and ego's that need the propping up of "doing good."
This week we have another interview and I spoke to Oisin from The Troubles, a historical true crime podcast, we chat about podcasting, history, media, politics and more. You can here.
Parry takes us through both the high and low society of Edinburgh but we find in both of them calculated crime, devious intent and women struggling under rigid morality the consequences of which men often invade.